When you find out an ex is getting married, it’s always a shock -- especially if you’ve harbored hope for reconciliation. The shock was never greater than it was with California-based old flame Mark (a.k.a Sparky).
Since we had kept in close touch and seen each other several times after breaking up, it was the last thing I expected to hear. I now Open The Vault and take you back to February of ‘98...
February 27th, 1998 -- Bangor, Maine
During our phone conversation the other day, Mark said that telling me about his marriage was hard because we haven’t been just friends over the last couple of years.
“I know,” I answered.
“You’re moving on with your life,” he said -- as I stared out the window feeling like that is not at all what I’ve done. But, he added, his new wife Caroline knows about our history together. And he said the last thing I would ever have expected to hear after what he’d already told me.
“I still care about you…I love you.”
“I love you too,” I said, for what was undoubtedly the last time.
Somehow, we managed to laugh a little. I told Mark the only reason I’d called was because it was my turn to do so, reminding him that even after all of this time, I’m still keeping score.
As our conversation drew to a close, Sparky and I talked about staying in touch. I told him that just because he’s married it doesn’t mean I don’t care about him. He assured me he would keep me posted on his health and even gave me his new email address.
“So, you’ll email me today?” he asked.
“Maybe…if I know it will garner a response,” I replied.
“It will,” he said firmly.
After telling me to take care, he said goodbye -- and I started crying.
You see, I was so certain that there was a reason behind Sparky and I remaining in touch over the years. Like our sporadic reunions were part of a grand design to eventually restore our romance to its initial glory. That we would at least get the chance to be what a distance of 3,000 miles never allowed us to -- a normal couple.
I’ve spent two and a half years holding onto that dream. Letting go of it is like losing a part of myself -- a very big part.
* * *As I adjusted to the new reality between me and Sparky, eventually a new love found its way into my life. Fate being what it is, though, Sparky and I would be thrown together again -- at what would be the most vulnerable time ever of my life.